Ocean State oyster industry is growing

RAW NUMBERS: Jim Arnoux, owner of East Beach Farm, said his lease for the small area in Quonochontaug Pond is one way to grow and protect his oyster business. More than 6 million Rhode Island oysters were sold for consumption in 2013. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO
RAW NUMBERS: Jim Arnoux, owner of East Beach Farm, said his lease for the small area in Quonochontaug Pond is one way to grow and protect his oyster business. More than 6 million Rhode Island oysters were sold for consumption in 2013. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO
Oysters, which account for about 98 percent of all Rhode Island aquaculture products, increased in value by 49 percent in 2013 compared to the previous year, according to David Beutel, aquaculture coordinator for the R.I. Coastal Resources Management Council. That growth is in farm gate value, which is what the farmer gets for selling the…

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